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Meg’s week of summer – part one!

if your friend has a beach house & she invites you to come stay with her… GO!
make all the arrangements… find places for your kids… take off work and just get there.
and if you can find friends who are hilarious, loud and bring all the fun… then you are going to be GUARANTEED a good time!

look at how crazy adorable this beach house is?!!
it was too much goodness!

we laughed till 4 in the morning.
and then again.
and again.

i can’t say enough that i loved every single detail.
everything was SO pretty!

i know everyone is going to ask if this is a rental (because it’s awesome!) but it is not.

and we got to take showers outside if we wanted!
i totally loved that!
if i am correct… we were in Gulf Shores, Alabama.
i thought i was in florida for several days so don’t call me if you have any geography questions ok?
the beach is my favorite place for a million reasons.
and if i get girlfriend time AT THE BEACH?
it doesn’t get too much better than that.
we were soaking it in… breathing deep… it was the best.
we ordered the mexican garbage because Tommy told us too.
and does a pina colada taste any better than when you’re at the beach?

this was Krispy Kreme Bread Pudding?  oh my goodness.

and then just like that it was time to go home.
sad face.

i love these girls.
so grateful to have the chance to be truly AWAY.
no craft house.  no guests.  no work.  no speaking.  no kiddos.  not even wifi!
total rest.
while laughing till i cried.

the best kind of rest.



#pitchperfect #sitkaalaska #seaandsuds #florabama #pitchercatcher #ryry #ramón #palmettobug #twohourwait #kimmyjen #frenchmarie #mrsroper #itsapeninsula #oliver #cody #fakemirror #windowstothewalls #buffaloquesadilla #pterodactylattack #target2012

Jackie - Amazing! My husband says even a rainy day at the beach is a good one. Looks like you had fun!

Southern Gal - Nothing in this world like a beach and good girlfriends to share it with.

Heather E. - Ahhhh! You were in my neck of the woods, I live about 30 minutes from Gulf Shores! It is THE BEST and it looks like you had a blast! Beautiful beach house your friend has there!

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one on one

i took annie on a little overnight getaway to see some of our friends who recently moved.
we drove three hours away and stopped for treats whenever we felt like it.
when i have my kids one-on-one it is fun to be able to say YES all the time.
coffee at starbucks for everyone? no… that’s extravagant.
coffee for just the two of us?  YES!

annie and her friend were playing in the pool as soon as they could.
these two have been buddies for as long as they can remember.
they to the same preschool and i did pick up & play time once a week & they did pick up & playtime once a week.
(do you do that with someone at your preschool?? you should!  it’s amazing!)

we went out for dinner to a restaurant that annie has been DYING to go to forever.
she was so surprised!
and said “thank you so much for bringing me here!!!”
and then said it again at bedtime.
it was adorable.
this salad was delicious!

i loved having time with my friend in her new home and new city!
so fun to check in with her!
i hate that she moved away but i love that she’s only three hours away!
spending time with just annie was a sweet little treat.
we spent the night and headed back to kansas together.
and i drove her straight to her camp to bunk up with all her friends from school.
she was excitedly nervous when i left.
i knew she would have the best time and she did.


sharon / - do i smell wedding bells in 15 years? (sorry! lollollol!!!) (and if so, please have those donuts at the reception!)

Brooke Klintworth - I recognize that place….. Tulsa!! Hope you liked it here:)

Jacci in Ohio - I seriously almost emailed you last week to see if I could weed all the weeds at the Craft House in exchange for an overnight :) Ha ha. Really, though, I bet you could have a discounted “work weekend” and people would still show up. I’d love to weed all day and then collapse in the porch swing with a piece of Pam’s cheesecake! My name is first on the list if you ever decide to try it!

Sharla - What an awesome pool. Looks like they had a great time! :)

jen - One on one days/overnights are so much fun! Love them. And that backyard looks amazing!!

Mickie - That backyard looks like my dream backyard. AHmazing!
And, yay for Redrock. I would recognize those plates, mashed potatoes and that dessert anywhere. My absolute favorite!

Flower Patch Farmgirl - Cuties!!!
Can’t wait for our turn. :)

Candy - What is the restaurant? The only reason I ask is that I’m about three hours away from you and it looks yummy!

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Talby’s room

i always like peeking into Talby’s space she’s made all for herself.
13 is an age where they are figuring out what they like.. trying new styles… growing up but not too far… one direction on the wall but still has special stuffed animals on the bed.
i love 13.

i don’t think martha stewart is going to hire either one of us to make beds for her but who cares about that?
beds are for sleeping anyways.
talby enjoys organizing and having a clean space.
she gets that from her dad for sure.

of course i love her chalkboard walls because i love that she and her friends can write & draw all over it.
i like when chalk boards look loved.
she also had a bunch of photos printed from her phone (with her own money even!) and used double stick tape to put them on her small wall.
it’s adorable.

some of these were taken with a wide angle lens so they look kind of wonky.
i like her aqua color she choose for the two sides.
and then left one wall painted white.
she’s got style!

i think it’s fun to see souvenirs still in use from years ago that i gave my kids!
and recent ones too!
(btw…. Talby is not short for Tabitha, her friends just wrote that)

talby and i hung each one together – she chose where they should go.
Paint – Mint majesty by Behr
Ultra Pure White by Behr
Chalkboard paint by Rustoleum
coral & white bedspread – land of nod
mirror – hobby lobby
dresser, bed, side tables & chair –  all hand-me-downs
curtain fabric – hobby lobby
“let your smile change the world” art – evie ivy crafts
“this is the day” art – hobby lobby
“one wild & precious life” print – Katie Daisy
frame – michaels
“let you light shine” hand painted wood sign – little branches shop
house for miniatures – vintage
butterfly canvas – by talby duerksen
“be brilliant” print – elissa hudson
“be your own kind of beautiful” – hobby lobby
“don’t forget to be awesome” – francescas
“you are unconditionally loved” print with deer – kal bartenski
“god loves you” print – studio mela
“live creatively” picture – hobby lobby
Peace & the shapes paintings were homemade.
rug & chandelier – ikea
twinkle lights – target


Kelly - Awesome job, Talby! Makes me want to go hunting up photos of my room when I was 13! Such a fun time. Megan, if you have pics of YOUR room at 13 how fun would that be to post?! :)

I love all of the verses on the chalkboard wall! And “cats scare me”. :) Kelly

Lisa - So adorable! She really does have style–and at such a young age! ;)

Nicole - My daughter has a very similar color on her wall. We kind of stopped decorating when we got done painting. I’ve just been inspired to continue!

tere - Nice work Talby. Your room is perfectly perfect. ;)

Lori - I love Talby’s room! Super cute!

Simone in New Zealand - Love it! She has great style. My daughter is nearly 11 and is always experimenting on her room too (she asked me to do a room makeover for Christmas gone and switched from aqua and pink to black and white with pink and gold accents). x

Wendy C - Thanks so much for posting this! Love Love Love Talby’s room! My daughter wants to redecorate her room as our summer project and this provides so many idea – especially the perfect mint color paint. We just started looking at paint colors this weekend and who knew there were so many shades of mint out there!

Kelly - Love it! Nice work, Talby. Takes me back to my own room as a teenager…many moons ago. I hope I can be the cool mom who hands over the reigns for teenage room design to my daughter. My parents did that for me, and it was good for me and for them!

Sara - Such perfect timing! Ever since you posted a pic of Talby writing on her chalkboard wall, I have wondered what her room looked like! Thank you for sharing! My 13 yr old twins want to “redecorate” their shared room. I will definitely show them this post to encourage them to go for it!

Wendy C - Thank you so much for blogging about Talby’s room – perfect timing as my soon-to-be 13 year old and I are just planning a redo of her room as our summer project. The paint color is perfect – we just started looking at colors and who knew there were so many shades of mint green!

Janelle - Can you do all the kids rooms? Would love to see the boys rooms for some boy ideas ;)

Christy - Love it, all of it! Especially the chalkboard & collage walls. She did a great job making it he own space.

Jenny B. - The gallery wall is my favorite! And… Talby is not supposed to be that grown up! I think she was only 8 or 9 when I started reading your blog, and that is just crazy. I love how you’re celebrating the now. You know that quote, “Yesterday’s the past, tomorrow’s the future, but today is a gift. That’s why it’s called the present.” :)

Susan - So sweet to see her passion for art and her obvious love of God…good job Talby!

Lisa - I love the entire room, especially the gallery wall! I used to have that EXACT same wooden house for displaying a portion of my thimble collection. It brings back so many memories seeing it again. It’s over 30 years old. She has an amazing style!

Kathy - This is absolutely BEAUTIFUL and totally makes me want to make over my daughter’s rooms now!!

jen - Love this!! It’s been great inspiration for my daughter and I as we finish up her room. The collage wall has been stumping us and Talby’s is wonderful. Thanks for sharing.

Julie - I LOVE this room! It has spirit and style…great colors and patterns… and it makes me wish I had chalkboard paint on my wall as a 13 year old! Thanks for posting this!

stacy p. - Your Talby and my Heidi are so similar. She begged for a chalkboard wall, but we had to say no since we are putting our house on the market at the end of summer. :(. We did, however, allow her to pick paint colors and she picked a color that is just like a sunset (kind of a light orange) for the ceiling and a light gray for the walls. She saw the gallery wall and we are in the process of putting that together…I can always fill in nail holes! Cute room! Thanks for sharing…

Mindy - What a sweet room! It looks like it inspires so much creativity – love it.

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summer happiness.

you guys… this summer is so good!!
i am loving it.
every day!
we have loads of sports but it keeps us active and not in front of a screen.
i like it even more when i remember my bug spray, my water and my chair.

annie is really enjoying softball this summer… especially after she got her own pair of baseball pants.
she feels much more like an authentic ball player now.

i am eating this salad several times a week this summer.
i can’t get enough of it!IMG_8356IMG_8389
this picture was funny to me…two kids playing separately on the floor… safely apart.
the legos have come out of storage again and are keeping annie busy.
(thank you Lego Movie! #everythingISawesome)
and we’ve been baby sitting our little friend too.
he’s a few weeks away from crawling into the legos so the clock is ticking on the floor lego time.
and he sleeps like a sweet little angel.
thighs rolls are the best!  :)
when i make bunting for the shop it starts out like this…
and then over and over 25 times.
all before it is sewn together.
4000 squares later… it’s almost ready for the shop.
the girls play softball AND basketball right now.
i appreciate an air conditioned gym in the summer.  :)

jr. high girls softball is tricky.
they are learning… there are lots of skill levels… they are pitching on their own… and catching…
it’s a lot to learn and perform.
but she LOVES it.
which makes me so happy.
i didn’t make it out to shop for a swimsuit before school got out and it just seemed impossible once every one was home all day.
i thought my suit from last year would work.
i actually had two.
but the strap got eaten by the dryer of one and the other just seemed to have lost it’s elastic over the winter.
so i decided to order a bunch and do what i would do at a store… at home.
Macy’s has free returns so i decided to just go for it.
my credit card company called me assuming it was fraud.
i said “no… it’s just me trying to find a swimsuit.”
i know my body and i know what works for me.
i know i can’t do a tankini because i need FULL support up top.
i know i don’t want anything cutting in on my tummy.
i know i need some spanx-y fabric through the middle.
i know i need a skirt over my hips.
i know these things because i know my body and how to hide and accent.
so i searched a lot and ordered these suits.
i ended up with the chevron… the navy dot… and maybe the magenta.
i enjoyed swim suit shopping at home in my bathroom much more than taking a whole day, driving all around and hoping to find one possible match.

more basketball.
and the day after that was ALL basketball.
i drove back and forth between gyms all day but i had time to myself which was nice.
at one point i sat in the car outside of a starbucks in my car getting wifi and blogging about summer drinks.
and repeat the basketball again on sunday.
this margarita was the perfect ending to all that.
so proud of all these kids!
it’s hard work to play all those games!
i could NEVER do it.
two games in a day? three?  four?  heck no.
but they loooove it!
this dog.
he is so lovable.
and so crazy funny.
holding all the kittens at once is no easy task.
ha ha ha
this picture could just be labeled “SUMMER”
am i right?

i stopped at the craft house and pulled a few weeds (unfortunately there are still a thousand more) while craig mowed the lawn.
i washed the pillow cases for the porch furniture and swept all the cobwebs away.
a clean porch is a good thing.

and right now… three of kids are at camp.
for the rest of the week!
i have one 17 year old at home and that is it!
it’s crazy.
and awesome.
and quiet!
17 year olds sleep a lot.  :)

isn’t summer just wonderful?
these days are so good.
i am loving it.
all of it.

Amy Woods - I have an only child. Also 17. He doesn’t sleep much, but he is definitely quiet or out. He will be a senior when school starts. WAHHHHH! My baby!!!

Love the suits your picked! And all your pics are FAB!!

Pam - I too love summer, however it will be 115 degrees here today. We hide in our house like it is a hobit hole and play games and drink iced tea and lemonade. When the sun goes down we slink out into the night for a swim in the quiet, heavy air. Such a freshing treat before bedtime. :)

Stephanie - Yay! Love the suits you chose. You’ll look gorgeous in those rich tones.
Your summer sounds so good. So quintesentially summer! I hate summer. But it’s because I live in Florida. It’s so gross here in the summer. I remember summer in KS–so pleasant. Gets hot once in awhile, but mostly great!

Maria - it’s amazing what subtracting three kids can do! My three oldest are off at camp this week too…just the youngest at home and it has been way too quiet! About 24 hrs left of that….

Enjoy your summer!


Jen - I love summer too, and I even work 25 hours a week. I wish I had more free time with my girls, but beggers can’t be choosers and I do love my job. I just love no homework, no school schedule, no lunch packing, no “hurry, you need to get to bed”…it’s just more relaxed.

Also, I was with Aaron Dody last night here in Ohio – fam were in town from KS. He loved seeing pictures of his grandparents old house – the Craft House. He explained that the kitchen isn’t where it used to be, told me about the business his dad and grandpa ran out of the top floor (do you know?), this room is next to this room, oh wow! there used to be a wall there, etc. I LOVED listening to him as he saw your old house. I have to admit that after following your blog for 6+ years and loving your home pics, I was a bit geeked out. I STILL cannot believe how I put this puzzle together. Out of all the people in this world, all the houses, awesome. crazy. wonderful. awesome. Have a wonderful weekend!

Gina - Wow!! Busy summer. Brilliant idea about swimsuits too!! I’ve bought my last few from Lands End and really like theirs. I agree you have to know what works best for your body. And I am going to be the one that asks for the salad recipe. ;) I see baby spinach, strawberries, blueberries, red onion, pecans and grilled chicken. Am I missing anything? Any cheese and what dressing do you use? :) TIA!! :) I get on salad kicks too.

Tricia - Hello! That salad looks yummy! I want to make sure I have all of the ingredients:

red onion
poppy seed dressing

Anything else?


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